The UK has Saville Row, India's Maestros have taken over the savvy and the rows are positively lined, measured, scaled, cut, clothed, ironed and hemmed in.
The Tailor of Panama himself would find the work, well-cut-throat and wryly dry.
The ol' jeans are threadbare bursting from and at the seams to the beams and the buttocks.
The ol' bugger's suddenly also two-punts bigger, meaning I've lost an inch or two in weights (or does that make it heights?)
Anyhow its time to patch up the ol' denims, and try not to go He-Haw, Maestros are notoriously dismissive of imbeciles, and He-Hawing might be a loud and proud American tradition but here they'll wriggle a hairy finger at you and go, "No Boy No! Nothing Doing! You Go He-Haw Somewhere."
The jeans may be American, but the blenders I'm seeking are Indians, and Indians have rituals you gotta respect.
Kept the watch, located the Maestro, greeted with that pile of what was still wet and fresh laundry (I'd washed them to show respect to His Craft). He said they were wet, asked if I'd washed them, and nodded in full approval.
Got new measurements. Looks like I'll have to slaughter the oldest dandy to save skin to wrap up the other two pants. Its the best punt and I take it.
Its always hard killing one of these (After what was a very Fakey-Levis' Meditation, I'd left one up in the mountains in Nepal. The memory still sucks- that fakey Lewis still had more than a good year or two left in its factory threads but gotta let go and like Ivan Vanko says to the billionaire, 'Hey Man, Don't Be Too Attached'- So I did, left him cold, old, torn, grimed and crumpled in a cornered knot, almost ashamed to say a decent goodbye, hence we skipped eye-contact and just parted ways as the doors of scarecrow slammed shut on his most eventful life- given he was a Dangler and not the Wrangler).
The same goes for the boots. The old boy'd done his tour of duty, and like the wrong Wrangler up there, I left the Chinese beef in a room as desolate as the pair itself- almost a mausoleum. I still thought he had some moos left in him, but the wizardly Moochiwallah (These Magicians are not Cobblers, they are Moochiwallahs) charged a price I couldn't afford. I sure do hope someone did.
But the walk must go on and now the rendezvous is on! My last one was just about a year to the day or more, and it was that old Chinese Bull getting all beefed upped then. Now the workout had to be done on two porters: one was a biking boot I managed to glean off for seven deadly Euros during the Queen's Day in The Netherlands when the Dutch go cheap and sell their saved family junk (inclusive receipts in most cases where numbers are still bold and inked!), and the other a mass-commodity crude-pair of boots that got to me through its fake snake skins.
The two cheap buys have done some walking, hiking, trekking, running and even beaching. I tend to make my boots do everything just as my fake denims are donned throughout the five seasons and more.
The other rendezvous (this is an event apart) awaits at the Moochiwallah's in Peeling, the Gateway to Bhutan. I'd given him a dead pair of Spanish pirates and he'd revived them on two occasions. I wasn't third time lucky, as I was about to pick up the pirates and hop into a van taking me to a train that was to bring me where I now sit and stand, he'd bailed out on the boots (but kept the fee) saying a family member's getting married. And that, to an Indian, is a big deal. To a Mocchiwallah, its The Deal of His Life. To your personally known mender and re-soler of your boots, its sacrosanct. So I mumbled my congratulations, and expectations that I'd be back for the pirates.
Now as that rendezvous awaits, those snake-plastered boots are getting the classic makeover- the Resoling Touch of the Wizard himself.
This rendezvous was an auspicious gully- laden with Wizards, it was a Moochiwallah's alley!
To boot, the Maestro with the denims is in the same locale- and Sunday being an off-day, they'd both asked me to come pick up Lazarus in Danglers and Snake Boots the day after tomorrow, on Monday. The excitement too big to contain that many hours wondering what my two maestros might be doing to the cloth and the skin, I'd insisted most respectfully for a Sunday deliverance.
As if on cue, they both said at different times in two separate rendezvous this same shit: "Tomorrow You Come Two O'Clock."
So at the Moochiwallah's, I managed to glue in another thirty minutes. Hence deliverance of rehabilitated blues was set at 2PM, and re-soled truck-tyre-rubber snake boots at 2:30PM. At a grand total of 700 Rupees, I should be tipping them handsomely- but when all's sealed and sown, a tribute to the craft is a natural extension of appreciation of the artistry performed and acknowledged. Never bargain with Maestros and Moochiwallahs, esp if you like what you have seen. Its one of the honestest money ever-earned.
That done, I'm finally going for a li'l self-flagellation via the local hood's barber, a torturous luxury I'd denied myself for more than a year. I'm gonna get beat. As for the Dhobiwallah, there's only so many clothes a man can really want, neat or need, unless he's got a closet, or better yet, decides to come out of it.
As far as that goes, I'm all for coming out and patching up, rather than booting it in and bolting it up- constipation is not good for the grace of the face.